Thursday, May 6, 2010

The upcoming special elections

I think there's a pretty good chance Republicans are going to win both of the special Congressional elections this month. And I think it's a virtual certainty Democrats will have a brutal time at the polls this fall. But as much as the media is going to try to make the Pennsylvania and Hawaii House races into some sort of huge harbinger for November, I don't think there's much of a relationship between what happens in these races and what will happen nationally later this year.

Almost every House race in the country this fall will feature a single Democrat running against a single Republicans in a district that saw movement in a Democratic direction between George W. Bush's reelection in 2004 and Barack Obama's election in 2008. But neither of these districts fits that bill.

Pennsylvania's 12th Congressional District was the only one in the country that flipped from voting for John Kerry in 2004 to John McCain in 2008. It was an outlier trending in a Republican direction even as the rest of the country was going strongly Democratic and it will be more of a surprise if it doesn't go Republican than if it does.

In Hawaii of course all of the polling shows the two Democrats combining for far more of the vote than the single Republican candidate, but with both of them in it until the end it does seem likely that the split within the party will give the GOP the seat- for six months anyway until they lose it under normal election circumstances this fall.

These two races just aren't very reflective of the overall battlefield in 2010 and it would be a mistake to read too much into their results.


Anonymous said...

I predicte weaks ago that both these races would go red, thanks for confirming that. BTW, Tom Jensen, I dare you to tell Dean Debnam your voting for Elaine Marshall.

wt said...

PA-12 will at least be good just to evaluate trend lines. If the Dem loses big, that will say a lot about (1) the decline in Obama's popularity in districts like these; (2) the inability of new candidates to ride their predecessor's coattails (e.g. Snyder, Obey, Gordon, etc.)

Christian Liberty said...

45% of early voting goes for Republican Djou

"More than half the respondents — 52.6 percent — had already voted. And of that group, Djou got 45 percent of the vote, one reason it's so difficult to imagine trends changing in any significant way between now and May 22."

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